LANCASTER — Create lively and lovely artwork with botanical items at the “Printmaking with Botanicals” workshop to be held from 10:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Saturday, June 10, in the Nathaniel T. Dexter Meeting Room, Thayer Memorial Library, 717 Main St.
Ann-Marie LaBollita, an artist and teacher who lives and works in Ashby, will be teaching this class. She is a graduate of Boston University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting and a Master of Fine Arts in studio teaching.
She has taught art to children and adults since 1990 and is also a certified yoga instructor.
“Participants will use botanical items that they have gathered before the program,” said Rachel Rosengard, assistant director/adult services librarian at the Thayer Memorial Library. “Working with a small gel plate, acrylic paints and botanicals from their own yards, home gardens, or house plants, they will learn to make beautiful prints without a press.”
Printmaking with a gelatin plate has been around for a while, added LaBollita.
“Powdered gelatin can be purchased at your grocery store and cooked, like jello, then put in a container to cool and solidify,” she said. “Artists make their own gelatin plates this way, often using a large sheet pan to make a plate to print with. In 2011, the company Gelli started making non-toxic artificial plates.”
Rosengard added that with the addition of stencils, participants will have the opportunity to create interesting backgrounds and build layers in their prints.
Participants will need to bring the following – flowers, leaves, weeds, and grass (nothing thick or with thorns); copy paper, tissue paper, card stock, drawing or printmaking paper; paper towels or a rag; and scissors.
“The benefit of working on a gel plate is that the surface is soft and flexible and can be printed by hand without the need for a printing press,” LaBollita said. “When you work with natural objects, like leaves and grass, the plate will pick up nearly photographic detail. The process is fun and exploratory and results in prints that are sophisticated, even for the beginning user.”
This program is funded by the Greater Worcester Community Foundation’s Rosemary Davis Nature Grant.
Davis was a Lancaster resident with a passionate concern for nature and the environment. The Thayer Memorial Library is grateful to the Greater Worcester Community Foundation, Rosemary Davis Memorial Fund, for generously supporting this series.
This workshop is for patrons ages 16 and up. Space is limited. For more information, or to register, call the library at 978-368-8928 or visit thayermemoriallibrary.org.